Dr. Seuss Week & SPES Book Fair

Dear Parents,

Since Dr. Seuss’ birthday is on Saturday, March 2nd,  we have decided to celebrate the week after from March 4th-8th and conclude the week with the Book Fair that Saturday, March 9th (more info about the book fair is coming your way!).  Here are the themes we have scheduled for the week:

Monday, 3/4: Wear rainbow colors for My Many Colored Days

Tuesday, 3/5: Wear crazy socks for Fox in Socks

Wednesday, 3/6: Wear pajamas for I’m Not Getting Up Today

Thursday, 3/7: Wear a hat and/or red, black & white for The Cat in the Hat

Friday, 3/8: Wear your SPES spirit wear and say “Hooray for Short Pump Day” for Hooray for Diffendoofer Day

Saturday, 3/9: SPES Book Fair at the Short Pump Barnes & Noble from 12-3

Have a GREAT weekend!!

Mrs. West

*** January 7- Highlights & Reminders***

Dear Parents,
HAPPY NEW YEAR!! I hope everyone had a very restful and wonderful winter break.

Here is what is happening in our class…

Reading- During whole group and small group reading students will be working on identifying the main idea and supporting details of non-fiction & functional texts. We are also working on using text features such as subtitles to help us identify the main idea.
These are the types of questions I will be asking during our reading block. You may use these question stems during your child’s nightly reading, as well.
Which paragraph answers this question?
Which sentence best supports the idea that ________ at the beginning of the article?
Which sentence supports the idea that __________?
Which question is answered in the section titled ______?
Which is the main idea of paragraph ___?
Which of these best describes _____?
The main idea of the article is that ____?
Which would be the best heading for paragraph ___?
The author gains the reader’s attention by, _________________?
Please make sure your child is reading nightly. This also really helps to improve decoding, fluency, expression, and comprehension.

Math-Prior to break, the students were working on measuring capacity & weight in both U.S. Customary units, as well as Metric units of measurement. Since our return from break, the students have been working on perimeter and area.  We will have a quiz on these concepts this Friday, 1/11.  Also, please continue to practice basic addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division facts at home. Thank you!

S.S.- We are starting our next unit on the ancient civilization of the West African empire of Mali.  The students will be able to describe the oral tradition (storytelling), government (kings), and economic development (trade) of the empire of Mali.

Writing- The week before break the students were taking word study assessments.  This is done to monitor your child’s progress. I used this information to reorganize our word study groups, if necessary. These assessments were not graded. Your child should have come home with their new spelling word list today, as well as their new spelling menu for the week.  We will also continue to work on creative writing and writing strong 3rd grade paragraphs.

Kid’s Club begins- Thursday, Jan. 10 after school

End of the 2nd Nine Weeks- Fri., Jan. 25


Have a great week!

Mrs. West



***November 26- Important Highlights & Reminders***

Dear Parents,

I hope everyone had a safe and relaxing Thanksgiving Break!! I also want to give a big thank you to Karen Kusterer for preparing our fall craft and to all of the parents who came in the Tuesday before Thanksgiving to help our class create our beautiful “Thankful Wreath” craft; Mr. Stoner, Mrs. Trak, & Mrs. Balaji. It is hard to believe that we only have 3 more weeks until winter break…boy how time flies when you are learning and having fun! Please just remind your child that they need to continue to work hard and do their best each day. I am looking forward to a great December with all of them!

Here is what we are doing in school:

Whole Group reading will continue to focus on main ideas and supporting details. We will also review making connections with text, and comparing and contrasting characters and their feelings.  During small group reading we will use graphic organizers to help the students pull out supporting details and the main idea of the texts that we are reading in our leveled readers. We will also be working on homophones.

English/LA/Word Study-
We will be working on the correct use of commas, apostrophes (contractions & possessive nouns), & homophones. During this marking period we will also be upping the rigor with our creative writing. We will start working on writing “Big Mac” paragraphs as opposed to just a “hamburger” paragraph (more information to be in your child’s binder soon). I have been working with the students on writing really good “3rd Grade Sentences & Paragraphs”. I am looking for good descriptive words, 5 or more words in a sentence, at least 7 complete sentences, as well as correct punctuation/capitalization. We are currently working on writing some more “Persuasive Paragraphs” in class.

New spelling words & spelling notebooks should have come home today!  Please make sure your child brings their spelling notebook to school each day!  The students are working on short and long “i” homophones.  Menu items are due on Friday and the test is this Friday too!

Social Studies-
We finished our unit on Ancient China & Egypt. We are now learning about Ancient Greece. Students already have some information in their S.S. section of their binder along with new vocabulary words.  We will have a quiz on these words on Friday, 11/30.  Please take some time nightly to review the words with your child. Thank you!

During whole group instruction we started our unit on Measurement. Our focus during the unit will be on U.S. Customary & Metric Units of measurement for length, weight, and capacity.
This week students will practice measuring to the nearest inch and 1/2 inch, measuring with centimeters, meters, & kilometers.
Our next focus will be on US Customary weight/mass (ounces, pounds)/Metric weight/mass (grams, kilograms) and then on to US Customary Capacity (cups, pints, quarts, gallons)/Metric Capacity (milliliters, liters).  Please find some new Measurement websites on my blog!

Important Dates:

Friday, November 30- Bring your favorite Stuffed Animal Day!!

Thursday, December 13- PAJAMA DAY!!
Friday, December 19-WINTER PARTY….more information to follow soon

As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please contact me any time after school or by email at kswest@henrico.k12.va.us

Thanks for all you do!
Mrs. West

Multiplication Websites


Games at Multiple Levels

X Facts in Word Problems
Hooda Math-Multiplication

Mixed Games from Multiplication.com
(Carl’s Cookies= commutative property; Quick Flash and Flash Fun= flashcards)Fact Videos: practice your facts by watching a movie designed to remind you about each product!
Quizzes: Test yourself on hard factors and track your progress!

Who Wants to Be a Mathionaire?

***November 7 Important Highlights & Reminders

Dear Parents,
It was great to see so many of you during our fall conferences.  Thank you again for coming.  Your children continue to work hard and I am so proud of their efforts in all that we do!

Here is what is going on in school:
During whole group reading lessons students will:
Become familiar with all parts of a fiction story and different story elements.  We will also be discussing main idea and supporting details in the upcoming weeks.

During small group reading instruction students will be working with me on leveled texts to best meet their needs, independent writing & word work, computer activities, along with having the opportunity to “Read to Self” and continue to visit the library independently.

Social Studies
This week we started our CHINA UNIT and will be learning about the many contributions of Ancient China. This a review for many students so they should be pros by the time we complete our unit.

We pretested on Monday for Multiplication and the students will be learning different rules and strategies to help them all master multiples of 0, 1, 2, 5 & 10. They will be exposed to other multiples over the next few weeks, but will only be responsible for mastering the ones listed above. We will test on Monday, November 19. Although we have moved on to multiplication, we will continue to practice addition and subtraction in class.  Please continue to practice these important concepts at home too!

Language Arts/Writing-
In writing we are and will be working on verbs, friendly letters, and persuasive paragraphs.  Be looking out for a “Turkey” to be coming home soon for a persuasive writing activity.

Word Study

Will pick up next week!   Students should be coming home with and working on their “Spelling Menus” Monday-Thursday. Menus are due on Friday of that week and students will have their Spelling Test on that day, as well.

Important Dates-

November 9-VETERAN’S DAY PROGRAM (9:00)

November 13- Field trip to see, “Mr. Popper’s Penguins”- Students need to bring a snack and pack a lunch and a drink on this day!!

November 15- Make-Up Picture Day

November 15- SPES MATH NIGHT!

Thanks again for all of your support in all that we do!
Mrs. West